Bad driver: blame the parents

Editorial

Ian Jacques / Editor
July 24, 2014 10:37 AM

It’s a time honoured tradition among teens ages 16 to 19 — learning to drive.

And with summer now in full swing, many young folks are taking to our area roads — with their parents in the passenger seat — trying to gain that extra piece of independence.

According to ICBC, more than 46,000 B.C. teenagers got their learner’s licences in 2013. But with that statistic comes an even more telling one through a survey released this week by the insurance corporation — 29 per cent of parents surveyed believed that their teens had picked up a bad driving habit from them.

Driving can be risky for new drivers because they lack the experience that older folks have on the road, so not only are they more likely to crash, on average, 18 per cent of crashes involving young drivers can result in an injury or a fatality.

In its survey, ICBC says the most common bad habits passed on to young drivers were speeding, not coming to a complete stop, impatience, eating while driving and not shoulder checking. Survey respondents also said that if they could do it all over again, the parents would enrol their sons or daughters in professional driving lessons.

With this survey, ICBC isn’t suggesting that all parents put on the brakes regarding teaching their children how to drive — far from it. They are just suggesting that parents take a little more time and care when passing on the lessons. See more tips for parents at www.icbc.com — it’s all good advice.

The children of today are the future drivers of tomorrow. Giving them the right advice and skills now will certainly pay off in the future. And if even one parent reads this survey and heeds this advice, that could be one fewer accident on our roads and one fewer young person getting into a potential accident.

Take care in the woods

It has been a hot and dry summer so far, and we here on the Sunshine Coast have been fortunate to not have a forest fire in our neck of the woods.

Others, though, have not been so lucky. There are currently 40 active wildfires 10 hectares or more raging throughout provincial forests. A lucky cooling trend and some rain have helped ease the fire danger rating and prompted the lifting of a campfire ban for the Coastal Fire Centre on Wednesday morning.

But that doesn’t mean we are out of the woods yet. Ministry officials expect that ban to be back in place in time for the August long weekend when more hot weather is expected.

In the meantime, enjoy your campfires, but do so responsibly and with respect. Our forest firefighters have enough on their hands without adding more fuel to the fire on the Sunshine Coast.


© Coast Reporter

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